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I’m not a person who wears jewelry.

I have a simple gold band that I wear on the fourth finger of my left hand. I wear it there, and I never take it off because it means something important to me. And now I have a necklace that I put on each morning and wear throughout every day, because that also means something important to me.

Carmela and I visited our cousins Roger and Nancy in Florida earlier this year, and before we left, they told us there was something they wanted us to have before we hit the highway home. Then they took the St. Christopher medals from around their own necks and helped us put them around our necks.

We were both touched.

Although Carmela has been familiar with St. Christopher – the saint of sailors and other travelers – all her life, I didn’t really know the story.

As it turns out, St. Christopher started his life known as Reprobus. He was 23 feet tall and had a “frightening” face. Reprobus, in searching out the strongest power that he could serve, met a hermit who convinced Reprobus to carry people across a dangerous river, which he could easily do, since he was 23 feet tall.

One day Reprobus was carrying a small child across the river, but the river kept getting higher, and the child kept getting heavier. After both of them almost drowned, Reprobus got the child safely to the other side, where the child revealed himself to be Christ. From then on, Reprobus became known as St. Christopher, from the Greek name Christophoros, which means “Christ-bearer.”

I’m not religious, but the sweetness of the gift meant something to me. I don’t know if our St. Christopher medals will keep us safe in our future travels, but I’m pretty sure they are not going to hurt. And maybe, just maybe, St. Christopher really is looking out for us and keeping us safe.
We can only hope.

– George Lee Cunningham

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